THE BIRTHDAY OF KHALSA
It was April 12. Preparations were going on in various gurdwaras for the celebration of Vaisakhi. Vanipreet Kaur, a student of tenth class, had enjoyed these celebrations last year also. But she did not know much about the importance of Vaisakhi.
This time she approached the local Gurdwara. The Head Granthi asked Harkirtan Kaur a senior member to answer her queries. The dialogue was as under:-
(Q) What Is Vaisakhi ?
(A) Vaisakhi is the birthday of Khalsa Panth. On this day in 1699, tenth Guru Gobind Singh gave Khande - KI - Pahul (Amrit) to first Panj Payaras (Five Beloved ones) at Anandpur Sahib. At present, Takhat Sri Keshgarh Sahib is situated at this place.
(Q) What is Amrit ?
(A) Sikh baptismal water is called Amrit (Nector, Khande-Ki-Pahul). The Hymns of Sri Guru Granth Sahib are also called Amrit. The Name of God or the divine word (Shabad) is also called Amrit. On the day of Vaisakhi, the sikh baptismal water is given to all seekers. This is called 'Amrit ceremony.’
Amrit ceremony in Sikhism is not mere a ritual. It is spiritual rebirth. In Sikhism there is no place for symbols, rituals and pilgrimages to holy places. The Gurus diverted the attention of people from the formal outer side of religion and laid emphasis on the inner life through ethical living.
(Q) What was New on the day of Vaisakhi 1699 ?
(A) Earlier, the Sikh Gurus (From Guru Nanak Dev Ji to Guru Gobind Rai) initiated disciples according to the rites of Charan-Pahul. Guru Gobind Rai (later Guru Gobind Singh) changed only the formal rites of preparation to initiation by the Panj Payaras.
The basic principle of Amrit remained the same. He later authorized Panj Payarass to give Amrit to anyone desirous of having it.
It was made compulsory for all Sikh men and women to add suffix of 'Singh' and 'Kaur' respectively after their names. Previously it was not mandatory.
The discipline of 'Five K's' ie Kesh (hair), Kangha (comb), Kara (Iron bangle), Kirpan (the Sikh sword) and Kachera (Shorts) was also implemented strictly. Sikhs used to have unshorn long hairs since Guru Nanak Dev Ji. But all these Five 'K's, were now declared an inseparable part of Sikh uniform.
Amrit was made as an admission to Khalsa organization. There was no room left for wavering. All must have the same creed which should be well defined and should not be confused with the beliefs and practices of the neighboring religions.
Guru Gobind Rai requested the Panj Payarass to administer 'Pahul' (Amrit) to him. His name was changed to Guru Gobind Singh from Guru Gobind Rai.
What an unparallel incident is this in our history ! Guru himself became a Chela (disciple) of his own Sikhs. With this the difference between the Teacher, and the Disciple was, for the first time in human history, eliminated. Never before had any religious leader, Avtar or prophet, treated his followers like that and had given them the status equal to himself that Guru Gobind Singh did.
vwhu vwhu goibMd isG Awpy gur cylw]
Well done; wounderful Gobind Singh;
Yourself the Guru and Yourself the Disciple.
(Q) Some people say –“I am a noble Sikh. I go to Gurdwara daily, I am not lacking in any aspect. Why should be Amrit compulsory for me”?
(A) The simple answer to his question is - If Guru Gobind Rai needed this Amrit and bowed before Panj Payarass why not we? Was Guru Gobind Rai lacking in any virtue? It was rather made compulsory for all Sikhs to have formal initiation in Sikhism. After the Amrit ceremony all become members of the family with one father, one mother, one birthplace, one belongingness and one caste.
On the morning of Baisakhi, 1699, the five persons were:-
On the evening of Baisakhi, 1699, the five persons who become first five Panj Payarass were:-
( Q) Who is a Khalsa ?
(A) Those who take 'Khande-Ki-Pahul' (Amrit) from five beloved ones and live a life according to Gurmat are called Khalsa.
The Khalsa are the people ready to sacrifice their everything for the welfare of others, for their country and Dharma. They hold life cheap before the ideals of love and universal brotherhood.
Khalsa of Guru Gobind Singh is a group of people who are determined and daring; truthful and trustworthy; dedicated and devoted to their Guru and Dharma. Khalsa is an embodiment of excellence in all facets of life :-
Moral Character Spirit of sacrifice and service
Universal outlook Bravery
Superb culture Goodness and truthfulness.
• The Khalsa is free of all fears, viz the fear of
state and the ruler,
mental fears created by the superstitions and institutionalized formalism and ritualism of religion and above all the fear of death itself.
Khalsa is the only instance, the birthday and period of whose creation can be pinpointed. No date, so far, has ever been known to the creation of a nation. It is the peculiar speciality of the Khalsa. After 230 years of the meticulous preparation and planning, the Khalsa was created in 1699 at the pleasure of Akalpurakh. In the Amrit ceremony not only the people from different caste and religions of india were welded together in one fraternity but even the Guru himself begged Amrit from the five beloved ones. By this act the distinction between the Guru and the disciples was mitigated and people in the form of Khalsa were given a status of the Guru.
In the ranks of the Khalsa, all are equal, the lowest is the highest, in race as in creed, in political rights as in religions hopes. Women also take Amrit in the same way as men and enjoy the same rights . Khalsa can give Amrit to the new orders of the Guru and is considered as the Guru incarnate.
There are four Bajar Kurehats (main Taboos). If She indulges in any of these, She is called a Patit (apostate). These are:-
1. Removel of hair from any part of the body.
2. Eating of Halal meat.
4. Use of tobacco or any other intoxicant.
(Q) What is the Salutation of Khalsa ?
(A) The salutation of the Khalsa is
vwihgurU jI kw Kwlsw ] vwihgurU jI kI Piqh ]
“Waheguru Ji Ka Khalsa. Waheguru Ji Ki Fateh.
Means: Khalsa belongs to the wounderful Lord,
and the Lord is always victorious.
(Q) What Guru Gobind Singh Ji says about Khalsa ?
(A) Guru Gobind Singh ji says:-
Kwlsw myro rUp hY Kws] Kwlsy mih hau kroN invws]
Khalsa is my own image, I reside in the Khalsa.
Keeping in mind the matchless virtues, Guru Gobind Singh gave an exalted position to the Khalsa and said:-
ienhI kI ikRpw ky sjy hm hY]
nhI mo sy grIb kror pry hY ]
· They alone have exalted me, otherwise there are millions of poor creatures like me.”
jwgq joiq jpY insbwsr eyk ibnw mn nYk n AwnY
pUrn pRym pRqIq sjY bRq gor mVI ml Bul n mwnY
qIrQ dwn dieAw qp sMjm eyk ibnw nh eyk pCwnY]
purn joiq jgY Git mih, qb Kwls qwih nKwls jwnY ]
· He, who keeps alight the unquenchable torch of truth, and never swerves from the thought of one God.
He, who has full love and confidence in God. and does not put his faith, even by mistake, in fasting, or the graves cremetoriums, or Jogis' place of sepulchre.
He, who only recognizes the one God and no pilgrimages non-destruction of life, penances, or austerities.
And in whose heart the light of the perfect one shines
he is to be recognized as a pure member of the khalsa.
Guru Gobind Singh also says:
The Khalsa is my real form or Image, and
the Khalsa is my Satguru (revered Master) in his fullness
jb lg ^wlsw rhy inAwrw] qb lg qyj dIau mYN swrw]
jb ieh ghY* ibprn* kI rIq] mYN n kroN ien kI pRqIq]
• So long as the Khalsa retains independent identity.
I will bestow on them full glory.
But the moment they adopt Brahmanical ways.
I will not trust them.
Vanipreet Kaur - What is the real meaning Niara Khalsa.
Harkirtan Kaur - Khalsa is Niara (unique) in 3 aspects :
1. Niara Saroop (Unique Identity)
2. Niara Sidhant (Unique Ideology)
3. Niara Aachaar (Unique Character)
As we are focusing on having 5K’s and unique identity, as we feel proud of our unique, unparalled ideology of Fatherhood of God and Brotherhood of mankind, so also we should have a unique character. We should never disobey traffic rules, never cheat or do backbiting, always ready to help the needy. We must achieve Excellence in academics and is our respective professions. In brief I would say :
Look like a Khalsa
Think Like a Khalsa
Behave like a Khalsa.
Vanipreet Kaur- Thank you, Harkirtan Kaur ji. You have given me a vivid picture of Khalsa. But I wish to ask one last question. What should we do on the day of Baisakhi ?
Harkirtan Kaur- We should at least make the following commitments:-
(a) Prepare yourself for Amrit ceremony. Beg before Panj Payarass to administer Amrit to you.
(b) Shun your caste surname. Do not write caste. Don't call others by caste. Address others by names. Must write 'Singh' or 'Kaur' with your names.
(c) Must be prepared for welfare of all i.e. Sarbat-Da-Bhalla. Help the poor, needy, your neighbor. Serve your fellow men.
(d) Try to be a true Sikh in thought and action.
(e) Be ready to right the wrongs of the world and in discharge of your duty, don't fear from any earthly power.
^wlsw myro rUp hY ^ws] ^wlsy mih hO krO invws]
^wlsw myro muK hY AMgw] ^wlsy ky hON sd sMgw]
Kwlsw myrw hI Kws rUp hY[ Kwlsy iv`c hI myrw itkwnw hY[
Kwlsw hI myrw muK hY, myry AMg hn[ mYN sdw Kwlsy dy nwl hW[
^wlsw myro ieS† suihrd] ^wlsw myro khIAq ibrd ]
^wlsw myro pC Ar pwqw ] ^wlsw myro suK Aihlwdw ]
Kwlsw myrw ipAwrw im`qr hY[ Kwlsw hI myrw Drm hY[
myrw p`K qy DVw vI Kwlsw hY[ Kwlsw hI myrw suK qy pRsMnqw hY[
^wlsw myro im~qr sKweI ] ^wlsw mwq ipqw suKdweI ]
^wlsw myrI soBw sIlw ] ^wlsw bMD sKw sd fIlw ]
Kwlsw hI myrw im`qr hY, shweI hY[ Kwlsw mwqw-ipqw nMU suK dyx vwlw hY[
Kwlsy nwl hI myrI SoBw hY, Kwlsw SWqrUp hY[
Kwlsw myrw snbMDI, shweI qy sMudr srIr hY[
^wlsw myrI jwq Ar pq ] ^wlsw so mw ko auqpq ]
^wlsw myro Bvn BMfwrw ] ^wlsy kr myro siqkwrw ]
myrI jwiq qy kul-brwdrI Kwlsw hI hY[ Kwlsy qoN hI myrI pYdwieS hoeI hY[
myrI jwiedwd qy ^zwnw sB Kwlsw hI hY[ Kwlsy krky hI myrw siqkwr hY[
^wlsw myro sÍjn pRvwrw ] ^wlsw myro krq auDwrw ]
^wlsw myro ipMf prwn ] ^wlsw myrI jwn kI jwn ]
Kwlsw hI myrw swQI qy pirvwr hY[ Kwlsw hI myrw Blw krn vwlw hY[
Kwlsw hI myrw srIr hY, pRwx hY[ Kwlsw hI myrI ipAwrI jwn hY[
mwn mhq myrI ^wlsw shI] ^wlsw myrI jwn kI jwn]
^wlsw myro kry inrbwh] ^wlsw myro dyh* Ar swh*]
myrI mwn-vifAweI Kwlsy nwl hI hY[
myry mn AMqr dI KwihS Kwlsw hI kih skdw hY[
myry jIvn dw inrbwh Kwlsy nwl hI hY[ myrw srIr Aqy svws Kwlsw hI hY[
^wlsw myro Drm Ar krm] ^wlsw myro Byd inj mrm]
^wlsw myro siqgur pUrw] ^wlsw myro s`jn sUrw]
myrw Drm qy krm vI Kwlsw hI hY[
myry guhj rwj, idl dy mrm Kwlsy dy kol hI hn[
Kwlsw myrw pUrw siqgurU hY[Kwlsw myrw sUrbIr swQI hY[
^wlsw myro buD Ar igAwn] ^wlsy kw ho Dro iDAwn]
aupmw ^wlsy jwq n khI] ijhvw eyk pwr nih lhI]
myrI soc qy igAwn Kwlsw hY[ mYN Kwlsy dw hI iDAwn Drdw hW[
Kwlsy dI soBw khI nhIN jw skdI[
iek jIB nwl ies soBw dw AMq nhIN pwieAw jw skdw[
sys* rsn swrd* sI bu`D] qdp n aupmw brnq suD]
Xw mY rMc n imiQAw BwKI] pwrbRhm gur nwnk swKI]
jy sySnwg vWg hzwrW jIBW vI hox qy srsvqI vWg buiD vI hovY[
qd vI piv`qr Kwlsw dI soBw nhIN kIqI jw skdI[
ies iv`c rqw ijnHW vI JUT nhIN ikhw[
pwrbRhm qy gurU nwnk ies iv`c gvwh rUp hn[
rom rom jy rsnw pWaUN] qdp ^wlsw js qih gwaUN]
hO ^wlsy ko ^wlsw myro] Eq poiq swgr bMUdyro]
jy mY hr rom qy jIBW pw lvW[
qW Kwlsw dw js hI gwvW, qW vI nhIN gw skdw[
mYN Kwlsy dw hW qy Kwlsw myrw hY[
swgr qy bMUd vWg AsIN ie`k dUjy iv`c BrpUr hW[
^wlsw Akwl purK kI &Oj]
pRgitE ^wlsw pRmwqm kI mOj]
Kwlsw pRBU ipqw dI Poj hY, sMq ispwhI hY[
Kwlsy dw jnm prmwqmw dy kOqk nwl hoieAw hY[
jb lg ^wlsw rhy inAwrw] qb lg qyj dIau mYN swrw]
jd q`k Kwlsw dunIAW iv`c inAwrw rhygw[
qd qk mYN swrw qyj-qwkq ausnMU idAWgw[
jb ieh ghY ibprn kI rIq] mYN n kroN ien kI pRqIq]
pr jd ieh mnmq qy Anmq dIAW rsmW Dwrn kr lvygw[
qW mYN iehnW nwl pRym nhIN krWgw[